More than 355,000 people per day enter Manhattan south of 60th Street along the Lexington Avenue IRT, the only subway line serving the East Side. On the West Side, 458,000 people enter that same area, but they’re split among two local and two express lines.
Meanwhile, another 285,000 people enter the East Side by car while only 144,000 enter the West Side via auto. The differences are dramatic.
The 2nd Ave line should have been built as part of the IND’s Second System plan but the market crash of ’29 stopped that. Parts of it actually got built in the 1970s, but the city’s near-bankruptcy stopped that. Nonetheless, the MTA claims it will open … the Phase 1 stub, at least, in two years.
Benjamin Kabak, the author of the article, writes 2nd Ave. Sagas.